For 15 years, aspiring singers succeeded or failed according to the whim of the audience on American Idol, which selected its last Idol on Thursday, April 7 during its series finale. For 15 years, each episode's most climatic moment where the contestants' fates were revealed was marked by those four little words from Ryan Seacrest: "Kieran, dim the lights."
Lighting designer Kieran Healy was with the show since its inception, and he admitted it is bittersweet to say goodbye to his American Idol family after so many years. When the show first began, the stage was very small and basic, and the budget did not leave much room for creativity. But as the show grew over years, so did the lighting rig, which at its end had approximately 5,000 fixtures, about 300 of which were moving lights. In the video below, watch the first episode of Hit Fix's "Who Makes Hollywood" series, where Richard Rushfield interviews Healy on the set of the famous singing competition.
Spoiler alert: It was actually lighting programmer Harry Sangmeister who dimmed the lights.